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MIlch on his way to win number nine. Picture: Phil Sharkey

IT’S NO EXAGGERATION to say that Nir Bitton is arguably the most exciting young Israeli footballer around right now. In fact he’s so good, former Israel national manager Eli Guttman believes the 24-year-old can become as good as the legendary Brazilian player Socrates. Speaking after Celtic were forced to deny rumours their midfielder could be heading for the Premier League in the summer, Guttman says he should stay put in Glasgow at least for the time being. “If Nir continues to play every week he will get better”, he said. “With Celtic he’s playing with more confidence and when you are playing with more confidence you can develop your quality.” That’s the good news for those north of the border. However, with another successful season under his belt, Guttman believes bigger clubs will come calling, and then could be the time to move on.

IT’S BEEN a good week in the ring for Jewish boxers. First up was Tony Milch, who made it nine wins from nine when he beat the vastly more experienced Kevin McCauley on points. Controlled, assured, and more significantly, comfortable, he turned in a polished performance which bodes well for 2016 and his aspirations of fighting for a title. Slightly further afield in the States, newly ordained rabbi, Yuri Foreman returned to the canvas for the first time in two years, and like Milch, won his super welterweight bout on points. Delighted with his winning return, he even took time to wish his supporters a happy Chanukah.

SPEAKING OF 100 percent starts, the Jewish News cameras will this week be at Scrabble’s Division Two game against Hendon United B to see if Ray Abrahams’ side can make it ten wins from ten. But aware that each passing game heaps the pressure on them, he said: “We have to learn to cope with the pressure that teams will try and put us under to stop our amazing run in this league”. What should be a thrilling top-two tussle awaits…